Committee for Public Counsel Services
The Committee for Public Counsel Services, a 15-member body appointed by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court, Governor, Senate and House of Representatives, to oversee the provision of legal representation to indigent persons who have a right to counsel in criminal and civil cases and administrative proceedings. Private attorneys provide representation and the Committee's Private Counsel Division (focusing on criminal and delinquency matters), Children and Family Law Division (CAFL), Youth Advocacy Department (YAD) and Mental Health Litigation Unit train, certify, support and oversee these attorneys. The Public Defender Division, CAFL and Juvenile Defender staff offices handle all other cases. The Public Defender Division has staff attorneys working in offices located across Massachusetts. Staff defenders provide representation to clients in criminal and delinquency proceedings in Superior, District and Juvenile Court. Additional staff attorneys in CAFL offices throughout the state represent clients in state intervention and child welfare cases.